Actor Blake Heron died on Friday in his Los Angeles home, mere days after he had reportedly completed rehab for his heroin addiction. He was only 35 years old.
Heron, who gained fame as a 14-year-old playing the role of Marty Preston in the 1996 film Shiloh, was found unresponsive by his girlfriend on Friday morning, according to a report from TMZ. Paramedics tried to revive the actor for the next 40 minutes, only for him to be pronounced dead at the scene.
Blake Heron’s cause of death has yet to be determined, but TMZ noted that he had battled heroin addiction for several years and had only gotten out of rehab a few days ago. A report from the Daily Mail added that Blake had reportedly been suffering from “bouts of the flu” in the days leading up to his death. There were no signs of illegal drugs or alcohol found at the scene of Heron’s death.
Prior to his untimely death, Heron had also been traveling with his girlfriend, makeup artist Chanel Panagiotopoulos, having spent a week in France. Heron’s last Instagram post showed him and Chanel posing outside the Eiffel Tower, with other photos featuring the couple checking out some of France’s other attractions, including the famous Louvre museum.
Although there is no evidence that Blake Heron’s cause of death was related to his frequent battles with drug abuse, he had spoken openly about these battles and starred in the film A Thousand Junkies, a movie about three heroin addicts, which was featured at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival. According to the HuffPost, he also cut a video commenting on his role in the film, and looking back on how he, as a young adult, had lost everything he had worked for, following years of escalating drug addiction.
“I started doing drugs when I was about 12, typical smoking weed at first and drinking and what not. It quickly progressed… and I lost everything. I lost my career, I lost all of my money, I lost possessions, and most importantly, I lost myself. I felt like I lost my soul.”
HuffPost added that Heron had returned to rehab in recent months, about nine years after he had last announced that he was clean.
Aside from his best-remembered role in Shiloh, Heron played a prominent role in the 1995 film Tom and Huck, where he starred alongside Jonathan Taylor Thomas and the late Brad Renfro, who died of an accidental heroin overdose in 2008. He also starred in the 2000 film Cheaters and in later years made guest appearances on a number of popular television series, including Criminal Minds and NCIS: New Orleans.
[Featured Image by Noam Galai/Getty Images]